Mechelen actually has three town halls: the old Schepenhuis (Aldermen’s building), Huis De Beyaert and the present-day town hall. Behind the latter you also have the 'Huis van de Mechelaar', the administrative centre for citizens.

The present-day town hall on the Grote Markt consists of two parts: the cloth hall with unfinished bell tower and the Palace of the Great Council. Why is the bell tower unfinished? Well, in the fourteenth century the cloth trade went into decline and there wasn’t the money to complete the building.
For 200 years the belfry was no more than a shell. In the sixteenth century, it was eventually provided with a temporary roof. Temporary? That roof is still there! The belfry is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. To the right of it, you can see the oldest part of the town hall, the remains of the earlier cloth hall. On the left is the Palace of the Great Council. The great council? In actual fact, the council never convened there, as this wing was only added in the twentieth century. It was built in accordance with the original sixteenth-century plans drawn up by the then famous architect Rombout Keldermans.

TIP! The inside of the town hall is well worth a look. You can visit it with a guide as part of the historical city walk.


Contact the attraction for more info concerning accessibility.


Grote Markt 20, 2800 Mechelen